The Atlantic Crossing
"...There were other bad winters in the next two decades, but no further disappearing acts until the 650-ton Red Star liner United States and the 729-ton Black Baller England left Liverpool within a week of each other in November 1844. The England carried no passengers, the other ship only one; both had crews of 25 to 30 men. Though both ships for the most part had made the crossing in good time in the past, no one in New York was much concerned when they were a bit late in arriving this trip: After all, the England had once taken 49 days for a westward passage, and the United States had a 54-day trip on her record. But as January passed with no sign of either vessel, alarm grew. In mid-February, another ship brought news of a tremendous gale that had left a London packet stripped of her spars and had nearly engulfed the strapping new packet John H. Skiddy. "Many of those who before had a hope," wrote the New York Herald, "have ceased to cling to it." But the Herald itself did not finally give the ships up for lost until March 7, when it reluctantly removed the names of the England and the United States from the list of "Packets to Arrive" and designated them as ships that "went missing."..."
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